Fig and Haricot Vert Salad with Date Molasses and Toasted Almonds

LUSCIOUS FIG SALAD WITH HARICOT VERTS | Kid you not, this salad screams vibrant flavours

The luxury of a luscious ripe fig is second to none.  A sweet, honeyed taste and a soft (some might say ‘squishy’) texture make fresh figs worth seeking out. Unctuous fruit studded with discernible seeds are a far cry from the dried figs most people know.

When shopping for the best figs, remember that these gems are fragile. Rare is the fig shopper who finds perfect, unmarred fresh figs. Lucky for the rest of us, slightly wrinkled (but still plump) and even split figs (as long as they are not weeping or leaking), are what you want.  Avoid figs that look shrunken, are oozing from their splits, have milky liquid around the stem, or are super squishy.

Sadly, figs don’t store for long. Fresh figs wait for no one, so plan on eating them within a day or two of buying them. They keep best at room temperature with plenty of air circulating around them. They will keep a bit longer in the refrigerator, but chilling detracts a bit from their full flavour, so try to avoid it.

While a lot of people love to use fresh figs in desserts, I opted for a vibrant salad instead with a hint of middle eastern touch. For those of you who can’t source date molasses, pomegranate molasses also works (these you can find in a Middle Eastern grocer) or a good quality aged balsamic vinegar (just omit the red wine vinegar). 

Fig and Haricot Vert Salad with Date Molasses and Toasted Almonds

PREP TIME: 10 min | ACTIVE TIME: 5 MIN | TOTAL TIME: 15 min | YIELDS: 4 servings 

Ingredients:

  • 400g fine green beans / haricot verts, trimmed
  • 3 tablespoon of a high quality extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoon of sea salt flakes
  • 2 tablespoons of date molasses (or pomegranate / good quality aged balsamic vinegar)
  • 1 tablespoon of red wine / wine vinegar
  • 8 large black figs, quartered
  • 70g of silvered or flaked almonds, toasted

Method:

  1. Toast almonds in a frying pan over medium heat until golden brown. Set aside to cool.
  2. Bring to boil a pot of water. Throw in the haricot verts and blanch for 2 minutes. Quickly transfer to an ice bath (bowl with ice water and ice cubes) to stop the cooking process and maintain the ‘crunchiness’ and vibrancy of the green colour.
  3. Make the dressing. Combine the red wine vinegar, date molasses, olive oil and pinch of salt together in a small mixing bowl and whisk (or use a jar and shake vigorously).
  4. Cut the figs into quarters (or if super large, into eighths).
  5. Pat dry the haricot verts with kitchen towels and arrange on a large serving platter, along with the quartered figs. Drizzle the dressing and sprinkle the toasted almonds before serving.  

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